Chicano youth shot 17 times by LA sheriffs, 10 in the back
Family of Edwin Rodriguez demands D.A. prosecute ELA sheriffs deputies for killing son
Los Angeles, CA – The family of Edwin Rodriguez and their attorneys held a press conference March 8 at the historic La Placita on Olvera Street, the heart of the original Mexican/Native settlement. The family is demanding the release of the names of deputies who beat and killed Edwin Rodriguez on Feb. 14, and that D.A. Jackie Lacey prosecute them for murder.
Estela Rodriguez, his mother, spoke to the media saying, “We want justice for my son, he was a good young man; we will fight till we win.” Well-known civil rights attorney Antonio Rodriguez announced the filing of a claim for damages with the County of Los Angeles, a precursor to filing a major federal civil rights lawsuit. He also stated that the LA sheriffs did not have a valid reason to stop Edwin and friends and that their claim of a stolen car was false.
Estela Rodriguez also stated that the witnesses say that Edwin Rodriguez did not have a gun when he was beaten and shot fatally 17 times – including ten shots to his back and back of the head.
Stephanie Yanez, Edwin Rodriguez’s partner, told the media and public present that he was a good father, loved people and loved sports.
Representing Black Lives Matter, Dr. Melina Abdullah expressed solidarity and said that police target Latinos and Blacks for abuse and killings. People were moved to have five Black Lives Matter members supporting the Rodriguez family. Dr. Abdullah led a chant, “Latinos lives matter, Black lives matter!”
Cynthia Anderson-Barker with the National Lawyers Guild called for the release of the names of the killer sheriffs and for their immediate and vigorous prosecution.
Carlos Montes, organizer with Community Service Organization (CSO), spoke on the long history of the ELA sheriffs’ brutality and killings in the East Los Angeles Mexican-American community, mentioning Carlos Oliva, killed Sept. 19, 2013 and now Edwin Rodriguez. Montes stated, “We will work with the family and community and fight till we win justice for Edwin.”
The family of Edwin has asked CSO to help organize a campaign to win justice for Edwin Rodriguez.
Edwin was killed in the early morning of Feb. 14 by sheriff deputies. Witnesses described the deputies as knocking him to the ground then shooting him in the back. At the time of the shooting he did not pose an imminent threat to the deputies and was shot without just cause.
The family and local residents are demanding justice for Edwin Rodriguez, release of the identities of the deputies responsible and their prosecution for murder and an end to police killings of Mexican American young men in LA.
Edwin Rodriguez was a father of a three-year-old with his partner Stephanie and living with his family in East Los Angeles. He was an avid soccer player and won many awards, including the Goal Champion 2010 award for the Los Angeles Premier Soccer League. He was looking forward to the NFL Rams football team moving to Los Angeles. He attended Garfield High School, worked as a cashier at a local market and loved to draw art and cartoons. He loved people and liked to sing at family gatherings. He was a lifelong resident of East LA, born on Nov. 5, 1991 at White Memorial Hospital in Boyle Heights.
Edwin’s remains were laid to rest on Feb. 29 at Calvary Cemetery after a walking procession by hundreds accompanied his body through ELA.